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Military Struggle and Identity Formation in Latin
AmericaRace, Nation, and Community During the Liberal Period$
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Nicola Foote and Rene D. Harder Horst

Print publication date: 2010

Print ISBN-13: 9780813034874

Published to Florida Scholarship Online: September 2011

DOI: 10.5744/florida/9780813034874.001.0001

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“The Slayer of Victorio Bears His Honors Quietly”

“The Slayer of Victorio Bears His Honors Quietly”

Tarahumaras and the Apache Wars in Nineteenth-Century Mexico

Chapter:
(p.224) 10 “The Slayer of Victorio Bears His Honors Quietly”
Source:
Military Struggle and Identity Formation in Latin America
Author(s):

Julia O'Hara

Publisher:
University Press of Florida
DOI:10.5744/florida/9780813034874.003.0011

This chapter explores the participation of Tarahumara Indians in the Mexican military during the Apache wars, and reflects on the meaning of the silence and ambiguity—pervasive not only in the immediate aftermath of the conflict but also in present-day narratives and commemorations—surrounding the collective memory of their participation. During the Apache wars, Tarahumara service on the battlefield frequently presented an exception to the racial ideologies of everyday life. Yet history and memory in northern Mexico have struggled to make sense of this unique field of interaction among non-Indians and Indians, whether Tarahumaras, Apaches, or others—a struggle that continues to shape debates over race, national identity, and the “Indian question” to the present day.

Keywords:   Tarahumara Indians, Mexican military, Apache wars, battlefield, national identity, Indian question

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